What is SEW
Startup Europe Week (SEW) is a mix of events, community, and movement focused on supporting local entrepreneurs, no matter where they are or come from.
The way we support these local entrepreneurs is through our SEW Co-Organizers, who are local leaders involved in improving the resources available for their community, from advisory to co-working spaces, from grants to open innovation opportunities among several others. Regional networks of businesses, advisors, investors, and government institutions provide such resources.
SEW brings it all together in a simple yet efficient way. We make sure an entrepreneur (novice or experienced) is aware of what is available for him/her to get started and who can join them in this long journey. That means always bringing the local, regional, or city-level perspective, which is where all new ventures start.
We started our journey back in 2015 out of a simple quest to provide the most basic support for entrepreneurs, which typically comes out of their neighborhood, avoiding the distraction around startups, scaleups, unicorns stories from Silicon Valley and elsewhere.
While we believe there is an inspiration in those stories, they serve no practical purpose when someone wants to get started and have no venture capitalists around, not to mention a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem. So our thesis is that anyone can get started anywhere, as long as he/she understands the truth about their city/region. That typically means two things: local resources and the uniqueness of what their geography has to offer.
Being an entrepreneur and an entrepreneurial hub became increasingly trendy since the 2008 economic crisis. While we know entrepreneurship is an extraordinary life path, like any path, it has its bumps. Whoever claims to hold the "magic formula" for success in any entrepreneurial venture is naive. To say the least. We know from experience that any region can be a thriving entrepreneurial ecosystem if some essential elements are in place, being supportive people by far the most important one. The good news is that such people exist everywhere. Through them, many of the locked doors for entrepreneurs start to open, not necessarily through investments but sometimes through a connection, a pilot project, in-depth conversations.
From those humbling beginnings, no matter where people come from, they can then put together their ideas to solve a problem and create a product or service. If staying in their city is enough, great. If moving from their city to a bigger one with different resources (say venture capital money, for example), great as well. There is no right or wrong in the entrepreneurial world. There is just the truth. The truth of markets, and most importantly, the truth of every person involved in the projects that we call new ventures, business, or startups.
In sum, SEW exists to help each local community to bring to light the truth about their local reality for entrepreneurs to start and thrive.
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